Can Lunch Meat *Actually* Be Healthy? A Veteran Butcher Weighs I…
How to Make Air Fryer Chicken Wings with 3 Sauces: Honey Buffalo…
How to Make Focaccia di Recco with Stracchino Cheese and Sea Sal…
It IS Possible to Change Your Metabolism For Weight Loss—Doctor …
How Brown Fat Is Good For You + Can Burn The Bad Stuff Away
How to Make Chicken and Shrimp Penne, Chesapeake Bay Style | Rac…
How to Make a Celery Margarita Inspired by Cel-Ray Soda | John C…
Grand Slam Corndogs (For Breakfast!) + Former Yankee Nick Swisher
Foodie Dan Pashman Cooks Up a New Pasta Shape + Rach's Easy Sala…
Style Pro Stacy London + Rach's Bacon and Beef Chili
B-L-T Burger Night + "The View" Host Sara Haines
Clinton Kelly's Connecticut Home Tour + His Recipe for Chicken &…
How to Make Tomato Pesto Bites | Easy No-Cook Appetizer | David …
My Teenager Seems So… Distant. When Should I Worry?
Youth Development Expert Answers Most-Asked Parenting Questions
How to DIY a Wine Rack Using Common Hardware Store Items
11-Year-Old Cook Teaches You How to Make Her Easy Meatballs in T…
How to Make Key Lime Pie Cookie Cups
How to Make Brie Bites | Easy Appetizer | David Burtka
How Do I Teach My Kids to Eat Healthier? They Only Want Junk Foo…
Sure, lunch meat is convenient when you're planning meals for a family on a budget, but you should always be taking a closer look at what you're buying.
For starters, our show's resident butcher and author of "The Everyday Meat Guide," Ray Venezia, explains that there are two types of cold cuts: fresh-roasted and cured.
Essentially, Venezia says, fresh-roasted means you're getting a fresh piece of meat with fresh seasoning that's roasted right in the store.
RELATED: You Should Be Asking Your Supermarket Butcher These Questions
As for cured meats, he explains, "Curing is just using salt [as] a preservative and to add flavor, mostly done with sodium nitrate."
In fact, the butcher notes that cured meats could have almost 400 times more salt content than fresh-roasted meats.
Watch the video above to see Venezia show how the two types compare to the naked eye.
(Spoiler: Cured meats tend to look more uniform. Plus, Venezia says nitrates gives lunch meat a pink color.)
And contrary to what you might think, not all pre-packaged cuts are created equal!
According to Venezia, you *can* buy pre-packaged fresh-roasted cuts at certain stores.
Just pay attention to labels -- both behind the counter and not!
RELATED: Ray the Butcher's Tips for Buying, Storing & Preparing Meat
"All the information is there," Venezia says.
"Even the big piece comes to the stores with labeling on it," he continues of the pieces sitting behind the deli counter. "So just like talking to your butcher, talk to the deli associate."
(Spoiler: Look for "no nitrate or nitrite added" on labels!)
Oh, and don’t be fooled by "all-natural" labels, either.
"People see 'all-natural' and think ‘that’s great,'" Venezia explains.
BUT he notes that cold cuts could be labeled “all-natural” and still contain something called "cultured celery extract," which is a natural form of sodium nitrate.